Fablehaven: Rise of the Evening Star, the continued adventure of Kendra and Seth as they learn more about Fablehaven and all mystical and dangerous creatures dwelling there. Mull has crafted another great storyline loaded with twists and surprises. As a writer, Mull’s greatest strength is in the story itself and he has done well.
As a huge improvement from book #1, Kendra and Seth are no longer the 100% stereotype good girl/bad boy. Thank heavens. I found them much more well-rounded and likeable this time around. Another improvement, Mull is not beating us over the head with an obvious moral.
Now, let’s talk a little about the writing. This whole book suffered from what I could only refer to as a redundancy crisis. Mull would explain a situation in the narrative, then the characters would talk about it, and then they would do what they talked about. Or they would think about it after talking about it and then explain it to another character. Needless to say, it’s irritating to read the same thing over and over.
I also felt there was a voice issue. It was as if all the characters, including the narrative voice, had the same vocabulary list. The only characters with a unique voice were the goblins in the dungeon. When describing things, the characters, regardless of age or life experience, would inexplicably use the same needlessly complicated words. And for a YA book, needlessly complicated words isn’t a plus.
Dearest Brandon – I know that Seth somehow had to escape that frog monster, and being eaten while in a cocoon was brilliant. But, did you have to go into such detail about Seth being pooped out? Could you not have handled that in a different way? I don’t need to hear about three-foot high piles of excrement either. What eleven year old uses the word “excrement” anyway?
Overall I give the book a 7 out of 10. It started slow but once it got going I couldn’t put it down. Loved the puzzle solving sequence at the end, wished it had one or two more elements. Yes, I will finish the series now that the last book has been released. No, I probably won’t buy it for my collection.
I still need to go through my college papers to find out if Brandon and I were in the same creative writing class. Guess that means unearthing the mystery boxes in the garage…
My reviews of the rest of the series: